EppsNet Archive: Jim McCarthy

What Does a Programmer Do?

I was asked to give a talk last week to a high school computer science class on “What Does a Programmer Do?” (I’m indebted to Jim McCarthy for the “lords and ladies of logic” section.)   Programming is problem solving. At the highest level, the problem that programmers solve is that people want to be able to do things with… Read more →

I Think We Are Kidding Ourselves

More people have ascended bodily into heaven than shipped great software on time. — Jim McCarthy On the other hand, the number of people on LinkedIn claiming to have a demonstrated ability to lead software projects to successful completion, on time and on budget, as well as the number of companies seeking to hire such people, is infinite. Thus spoke… Read more →

Problems

If you tolerate it, you insist on it. If you insist on it, it will be supplied. If you see a problem, you own it. If you ignore a problem, you’ll see more of it. — Jim and Michele McCarthy, Software for Your Head Read more →

The Best Measure of Truth

If you act as if something is true, you will shortly find out whether it is or isn’t. Any reduction of effort or increase of abundance you enjoy as a consequence of your new belief is the best measure of its truth. — Jim and Michele McCarthy, Software for Your Head Read more →

Jim McCarthy on Steve Jobs

He was utterly intolerant and disdainful of, and even mean spirited about, mediocrity. Not a designer himself, but a sublime critical thinker, he totally focused his life’s work on design perfection. This intensity, obsessiveness, and his total lack of compassion about others’ inferior thinking resulted – over a period of about 25 years, in five or six truly, climactically great… Read more →

What You Say You Believe

What you say you believe isn’t as important as what you believe. And, obviously, you don’t believe what you don’t enact. Although describing, proselytizing, or otherwise articulating your beliefs in media other than your own acts can be fun, it is seldom very useful to you or anyone else. Babbling on about a value is a distraction from attaining it.… Read more →

If You Tolerate It, You Insist On It

Whenever you perceive that a virtue is missing or that a vice is present, you either tolerate the situation or try to change it. If you cannot “fix” it, you can at least withdraw your participation. The problem with tolerating the absence of virtue or the existence of vice is that this choice summons them into your life. You might… Read more →

In a Conference Room

Stop being false just because you’re in a conference room. Start actively engaging. For example, when you think an idea someone states, or one a group adopts, is a poor one, investigate it. Either you don’t understand it, or it is a poor idea. Stop everything, and find out why someone would say such a thing at this time. What… Read more →

Don’t Know What You Don’t Know

It is essential not to profess to know, or seem to know, or accept that someone else knows, that which is unknown. Almost without exception, the things that end up coming back to haunt you are things you pretended to understand but didn’t early on. At virtually every stage of even the most successful software projects, there are large numbers… Read more →

SharedVision

The principal effects of SharedVision derive from the group’s continuous validation that an object of compelling beauty and importance can be, and will be, achieved by its combined thinking and intense, concerted action. Attempting a goal like that typically found in a vision statement of this class of team requires substantial ambition. The SharedVision object is something that each team… Read more →

Ask for Help

Asking in time of trouble means you waited too long to ask for help. Ask for help when you are doing well. — Jim and Michele McCarthy Read more →

Offer What You Have

Offer what you have, disclosing what you feel and think, connecting only with those who do likewise. — Jim and Michele McCarthy, Software for Your Head Read more →

Ask for Help

This is the first, and most important, lesson of teams: ask for help. So we live by this lesson. If they don’t ask us for help, they never learn who we are and what we have to give. It can be frustrating for us, and hard for them, but not as frustrating and hard for both as us wasting ourselves… Read more →

Conditions

What actions you take, you believe in. What commitments you make, you keep. What resources you have, you use. What words you say, you believe to be true. What you create, you intend to be great. — Jim and Michele McCarthy Read more →

Aggregating Intellect

A team can aggregate the intellects and elevate the nobility of the group as a whole to create a greatness of effect comparable to, or even surpassing, any individual genius. — Jim McCarthy Read more →

In Creative Work, the More Ideas the Better

Simply encouraging “idea-consciousness” can have a profound impact. For a group to realize they are working with too few ideas is a tremendous step. — Jim McCarthy Read more →

Twitter: 2010-05-10

RT @mccarthyjim1 In almost every case, action will produce many times more results than planning. http://post.ly/dMei # RT @eddiepepitone: In honor of my mom I burnt a meal, ignored myself and accused my dad of aloofness. # RT @eddiepepitone: The only thing stopping me today is my childhood, my genetics, my income, my innate laziness and my parole officer. # Read more →

The Authority of Ideas

A team committed to providing great products or services on time will shift its point of view on authority. It will move from viewing authority as emanating from bosses to viewing authority as emanating from ideas and from the nurturing and championship of an ecology of ideas. — Jim McCarthy Read more →

Willing to Change

Saying that you want something implies that you are willing to change to get it. Otherwise, you really don’t want the thing. — Jim McCarthy Read more →

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